7 Interesting Facts About India’s Guardian Angels Who Ensure That The Skies Remain Safe
Hello Defence Lovers, The Indian Air Force (IAF) is one of the most powerful armed forces in the world that has fought numerous wars as well as effected scores of civilian rescue operations. From shielding India against China and Pakistan to rescuing stranded civilians affected by natural calamities and civil wars, the IAF has time and again proved why it is significant in our national security.
- Establised on 8 October 1932, India celebrates its 86th Air Force Day today, and our might in the skies has only increased manifold in these nine decades. Interestingly, the Marshal of the Indian Air Force is the highest achievable rank and is conferred as an honourary recognition. It is equivalent to Field Marshal of the Indian Army or Admiral of the Fleet of the Indian Navy.
- With the motto Nabhah Sprsam Diptam (Touch the sky with glory) on their lips, the guardians of the sky take off without fear and keep a constant vigil from up above to ensure our country is safe round-the-clock. On this note, let us take a look at a few important, interesting facts about IAF:
Father of Indian Air Force
- Air Marshal Subroto Mukerjee, (5 March 1911 – 8 November 1960) was the first Chief of the Air Staffof the Indian Air Force (IAF). Born in a Bengali family of repute, he was educated in India as well as England.
- He joined the Royal Air Force and later was one of the first recruits of the Indian Air Force. He had an illustrious career and had been awarded with many honours until his accidental death in 1960.
- He has been called the “Father of the Indian Air Force”
Nirmal Jit Singh Sekhon
- Flying Officer Nirmal Jit Singh Sekhon is the first and only Indian Air Force officer to receive the Param Veer Chakra. Though he was conferred with the highest gallantry award of India posthumously, his heroics in the 1971 Indo-Pak war are stuff that legends are made of.
Fourth largest in the world
- With over 1,700 aircraft in its fleet operating out of 60 air bases, the Indian Air Force is the fourth largest air force in the world, after the United States, Russia, and China. The IAF has more than 600 combat aircraft and over 500 transport carriers and choppers.
Marshal of the Indian Air Force Arjan Singh
- The rank of Marshal of the Air Force has been conferred by the President of India on one occasion in history, to Arjan Singh. On 26 January 2002 Singh became the first and so far, only five-star rank officer of the IAF equal to the army rank of Field Marshal
IAF has five Commands
- The Indian Air Force has five commands across India: the Western Air Command, with its headquarters in New Delhi, the Southwestern Air Command at Jodhpur in Rajasthan, the Eastern Air Command at Shillong in Meghalaya, the Central Air Command at Allahabad in Uttar Pradesh, and the Southern Air Command at Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala.
- Padmavathy Bandopadhyay is the first Air Marshal of the Indian Air Force. She is also the second woman in the Indian armed forces to be promoted to a three-star rank, after Indian Army’s Lieutenant General Punita Arora.
- Avani Chaturvedi is one of India’s first female fighter pilots. She, along with Mohana Singh and Bhawana Kanth, were inducted into the IAF in June 2016, formally commissioned by the then Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar.
- We might leave this day behind tomorrow, but our fighters will continue to protect us from up above. Let us all salute our brave security forces and celebrate Air Force Day with them.
Also Read, All You Need To Know About Avani Chaturvedi 1st Indian Woman To Fly A Fighter Aircraft Solo